ESPN The Magazine announced that legendary golfer Gary Player will be featured in the lineup of athletes for their annual "Body Issue." At age 77, Player, who is widely regarded as a pioneer in sports fitness and Golf's Global Ambassador, will be the oldest athlete in the feature's five-year history. The Body Issue celebrates the best bodies across the world of sports and will be released on July 12.
"Fitness has been a passion, a way of life and one of the keys to my success in golf," said Player, who has won 165 golf championships worldwide, including nine Majors. "When ESPN approached me with this unique opportunity to show off my body that has served me so well over my 60 year career, I agreed in the hopes that it would be inspiration for others to live well." The Black Knight went on to say he was "honoured to do so."
Player will appear in the 2013 edition along with 20 other professional and amateur athletes across a number of sports. This year's subjects include San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, 2008 and 2012 Olympic gold medalist Kerri Walsh Jennings, Washington Wizards' star John Wall, Marlins' slugger Giancarlo Stanton, NHRA funny car driver Courtney Force and professional soccer player Sydney Leroux.
"Being included in this magazine along with some of today's young superstar athletes has been an enjoyable experience," said Player. "I hope my appearance demonstrates the importance and value of maintaining your body and making a lifelong commitment to staying fit and healthy."
For more information about ESPN The Magazine's fifth annual "Body Issue," visit ESPN.com/BodyIssue. For more information about Gary Player, visit GaryPlayer.com.
ABOUT GARY PLAYER
Gary Player, often referred to as the Black Knight, symbolizes all that world-class golf is or was ever intended to be. A champion in every sense of the word, he has won 165 professional tournaments worldwide and through the philanthropic efforts of his foundation generated over $50 million dollars for the education of underprivileged children. Player, a master of the game, and a world leader in golf course design is credited with shaping more than 325 courses worldwide.
When Gary Player won the US Open in 1965 at age 29, he became only the third golfer to win the Grand Slam, following Ben Hogan and Gene Sarazen. Since then, only Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods have added their names to this elite group. Player has, to date, won nine major championships on the regular PGA TOUR and nine on the Senior or Champions Tour. He is a three time President's Cup Captain and in 2000 received South Africa's Sportsman of the Century Award.
In addition to his 40 years of golf course design, Player currently serves as the Global Ambassador to the World Golf Hall of Fame and holds an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from St. Andrews University. His legendary career and humanitarian endeavors have been acknowledged through numerous awards, including the 2012 PGA TOUR Lifetime Achievement Award, the 2006 PGA TOUR Payne Stewart Award, and the 2003 Laureus Lifetime Achievement Award.
Born in Johannesburg, South Africa, Player has circled the globe in pursuit of sporting events, and after journeying over 15 million miles (or 25 million kilometers) he is widely recognized as The World's Most Traveled Athlete. When not traveling to or from sporting events, Player divides his time between the South African stud farm, where he has bred more than 2,000 winning thoroughbred racehorses, and his residence on Jupiter Island in Hobe Sound, Fla.
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